Before I started working from home I had this romantic notion that I would float between desk and kitchen, keeping a vague eye on something wholesome on the stove or in the oven, blipping away until lunchtime. Now that I’ve worked here a year, I can testify to devoting even less time towards my lunch at home than I did when I had to rely on the ubiquitous sandwich chains for the weekly rotation of wraps, salads and soups – most of the time; there constantly seems to be something else that needs my attention.
Yesterday, however, was a punctuation mark of a lunch, a seagull-topped buoy on the recent sea of lacklustre lunches, and it’s inspired me to make more of an effort even though it’s only me. After all, lunch is pretty important, in the grand scheme of things.
Like all the best food daydreams, this one had an outside chance of becoming a reality as I happened to have all the ingredients in question. And the reality was delicious.
Serves 1 (or 2 as a starter)
1 bulb fennel
8 good shavings off a block of good Parmesan
Handful of crushed hazelnuts
For the dressing:
Cider/white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
Slice the very bottom off the fennel bulb and wash/discard any manky outer layers. Slice it very finely, or better still, shave it with a vegetable peeler (or – yikes! – a mandolin).
Peel and halve the orange, discarding any pips, and slice.
Make the dressing to taste (but a mustardy, zingy slick is best).
Dress and mix the fennel, nuts, cheese and orange slices in a bowl.
Eat directly from said bowl if you can stay away from your desk no longer.